I had the pleasure of interviewing Suze Orzman while she was enjoying her vacation in the islands. I must say she is an in-your-face kinda girl when it comes to your finances. She is committed to the idea that each member of this union must have their own money and contributes to the whole according to their personal financial income and expenses.
Suze believes that it is essential for everyone to understand that if you are being intimate with someone than you should know everything about their finances, especially since you know ALL about your partner. Why do we ignore the importance of this? I had to giggle; Suze was very clear that intimacy in your bed must translate to having intimacy with your partner’s finances.
On women and their finances, Suze did not hold back. She talked about what we all already know. We take care of and nurture everyone in our household, neighbors, friends, pets, plants and ignore ourselves. The very nature of women is to nurture, says Suze. I was trying hard to hear her and I thought I would fall out of my chair when I asked her twice what she had just said and her reply, “ You can FICO first, then Sex…” understanding yours and your mate’s FICO score will provide the right amount of security in your relationship. Most people don’t even discuss their finances with their mates and Suze says “it’s irresponsible, and most people don’t really know their partners, and haven’t discerned whether it’s love or lust, she says, unless you know how they manage their money, what bills do they have and their FICO scores. These important details will determine what type of home you can purchase, cars or trips are within your reach or not.”
Suze’s voice went up a couple of octaves when I discussed the person with the money rules the household, and she said “after marriage it’s way too late to discuss finances, it’s irresponsible for two grown people to not understand exactly how much money is coming to the relationship and how much is protected. Too many people who spend a percentage on the household bills may still have more money to play with than the other, at which point it becomes the percentage being spent after everyone’s personal bills have been paid. One partner should not have the ability to wine and dine himself and friends if the other’s income is not competitive. Most couples want to take their monthly bills and pay 50/50 on a particular bill yet if you both are making $10,000 per month and the other partner has more bills it isn’t equal. Equity is key in these relationships – particularly if you hold all the money.
Suze believes that as you are going through the courting period you must have conversations surrounding you and your mate building a financial life together and whether that will include purchasing a home, vacations, college tuition and other important investments. It needs to be very clear during this stage of your lives together.
Suze says, “you must have open and brutally honest conversations around a pre-nuptial agreement. Both parties must have their own attorneys and noted that if your partner wants to ignore or indicate that everything is going to be all right – these are red flag conversations. Each person should view this as being in a state of love and not hate; if you are hesitant or afraid to broach the subject, yet you make love and have orgasms with this person, but can’t discuss a pre-nep, you are facing financial cancer. And, quite frankly the other side of this is how do you manage this cancer that metastasizes when you won’t deal with actually getting your own lawyers and setting into place a financial pre-nuptial at least six months to one year prior to your wedding.
The other point that Suze made that rocked my socks was when she spoke about her relationship. Both she and KT were both millionaires, bringing their households together and the importance of having honest conversations.
For more information please visit: Suze Orman website and find the nearest workshop to attend or download some tools.
Marsha Jews is the Editor-At-Large(USA) for World Bride Magazine and the founder of Marsha Jews & Company a full service marketing, business development, Wedding/Events/ Conference planning & management; and communications company. Marsha Jews is the Founder/CEO of WKIMRadioNetwork.com.
and the former Founder/Curator of the Herbert Bearman Art Gallery & Director of Events & Weddings at the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park Museum.
Marsha was Project Director on two community technology development grants: Harlem Renaissance 2K1 and NY-OneNet at the Institute of Learning Technologies and the Institute for Urban and Minority Education at Columbia University, New York.
As President/COO/Associate Publisher at Career Communications Group Marsha managed Black Engineer/Hispanic and Information Technology Magazines; the Black Engineer of the Year Awards Conference and was Co-Founder of the Women of Color Technology Awards Conference; Black Family and LaFamilia Technology Awareness Week(s).
The former Executive Director of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Foundation of Maryland; presenting Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Ailey II and AileyCamp and Director of Advertising for the 125-year-old Afro-American Newspaper, Inc.
Marsha was Vice President of Operations for the Marine Corps League Exhibit Company, and was the first black woman to produce the Modern Day Marine Force in Readiness Military Exposition and Awards Gala a program of the United States Marine Corps, Capitol Marines and the Marine Corps League, while simultaneously the Director of Advertising for the Amphibious Warfare Review Magazine.
Marsha is active in the community; former board member of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and was the first Black Trustee to chair their Annual Gala; Commissioner- Maryland Public Television Commission; Founding board member of the Maryland Association for Nonprofit Organizations; former trustee for the College of Notre Dame and the Maryland Institute College of Art; Trustee at the Enoch Pratt Library, and has won numerous awards; Co‐Author in Incredible Business and is an avid volunteer and speaker.